Annals of fruity goodness: the strawberry file

(Warning: It ends with indirect allusion to mansex and with two shirtless actors, arms around each other’s shoulders, showing their stuff in their underwear.)

A recent posting in the My Home is California group on Facebook:

(a) I dreamed of photographing a sliced strawberry …, thinking it was a fruit. It is actually more closely related to a rose.

To which I now respond, first:

(b) I dreamed of photographing a sliced potato, thinking it was a vegetable. It is actually more closely related to a petunia.

And, second:

(c) I dreamed of photographing James Franco, thinking he was a fruit. He is actually more closely related to a piece of meat.

Strawberries. A photo — not the one on FB, but one from the Stark Bros. nursery, because it shows strawberry flowers (and a connection to roses):

(#1) Ad for the Strawberry Shortcake Collection: 100 plants of 4 varieties (for $40)

An expanded version of my response to (a):

This fruit stuff has gotten entirely out of hand (typically, it comes up in connection with tomatoes). In botanical writing, fruit is the name of a plant part (rose hips are fruits; so are acorns, the winged samaras of maple trees. and the pods of locust trees; so are zucchini, peppers, avocados, and string beans; and, yes, so are berries, including strawberries); in culinary writing, fruit is the name of a type of food (NOAD: ‘the sweet and fleshy product of a tree or other plant that contains seed and can be eaten as food’; specifically, they’re eaten as sweet food). They’re different words, with different meanings, like bank referring to a financial institution or the side of a river.

Also, even botanists don’t say that strawberries are roses; they say that Fragaria is a genus of plants in the Rosaceae family. The common name for plants in the genus Fragaria is “strawberry” (also for their fruits); the informal name for the Rosaceae is “the rose family” (which includes roses, all the stonefruit trees, almond trees, raspberries, cotoneaster shrubs, the garden flower and wildflower cinqefoil / potentilla, and more). But strawberries aren’t roses, any more than apples, peaches, almonds, or blackberries are.

You can see a bit of the relationship between strawberry plants, rose plants, and almond trees by looking at their flowers. Compare (a) with these flowers:

(#2) A (single) rose blossom

(#3) An almond blossom

Potatoes. The potato as a culinary object is the tuber of the plant, and its culinary function is as a vegetable, in one of several culinary roles.

Botanically, the plant is in the Solanaceae, or nightshade family, along with Jimson weed, tomato, tomatillo, chili pepper and bell pepper, eggplant, Cape gooseberry, Atropa belladonna (deadly nightshade), Chinese lantern, tobacco, garden nicotiana, petunia, Chilean potato tree, and more. Some discussion in my 10/17/17 posting “gypsum weed etc.”

Again, the flowers are similar.

Fruity goodness and James Franco. The nominal fruity goodness is now used fairly widely in food writing on the net and in ads for fruit-scented products, but it seems to be quite recent; Google Ngram pulls up no instances at all in the books in its current sample. But then there’s:

(#4) A self-improvement book: “Written by a health enthusiast from the viewpoint of Traditional Chinese Medicine, this book provides a friendly approach to health and vitality for the busy individual”

Astoundingly, I found no uses of fruity goodness (exploiting the gay slur fruit) in porn writing, whether intended dramatically or comically. I was hoping for something like, “I savored his fruity goodness flooding my mouth and looked up thankfully into his piercing eyes”. But no.

But I still have James Franco, who repeatedly presents himself as some kind of fruit — queer in spirit, gay as a character — but not as a fruit-fruit — not drawn to sex with other men. So: not a (sexual) fruit, but certainly a piece of (sexual) meat in his presentation of himself, as in this photo of Keegan Allen (left) with Franco (right) in their Nasty Pig underwear (designed for guys to flaunt their meat), on the occasion of their appearing together in the movie King Cobra:

(#5) From my 6/14/17 posting “Pride Time #4: gay porn and gay bioflicks”

Fruity goodness, but in very modest helpings.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: